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We’re almost at the finish line of winter. It’s been a tough one too. But, now that spring is here, it’s time to consider when we should be taking our winter tires off of our cars. We’re in that awkward limbo space where it may or may not snow again, and you don’t want to be caught in a blizzard with your all-seasons on. Here are a few suggestions on when you should put your snow tires away until next winter.
The first sign of spring might have you running to your mechanic to get your summer tires put on, but this can be a mistake if you do it too soon. A lot of people think that since March brings the official end of winter and the first day of spring, that mother nature is just going to flip a switch. Sadly, it’s not that simple. April of last year saw an accumulation of over 20 centimetres of snow, and this year may not be that different. Mild temperatures are expected to start the spring off, but some experts remind us that we had some snow in May last year!
It’s suggested by specialists, such as CAA, that April 15th be the earliest day that you should take off your winter tires. Temperature is what you should really be focusing on. We suggest that you wait until temperatures hit 7°C on a consistent basis, which is when winter tires start to lose grip. Winter tires are designed to have flexible tread below freezing and they have extra tread blocks with a lot of sipes for ice grip.
You shouldn’t use all-season tires in winter and it’s equally important not to use winter tires in summer. The design of the treads is not meant for warm weather and will be wrecked if used during the improper months. The summer heat will actually break down the tread on winter tires and as anyone who has bought winter tires knows; they are not cheap. So, make sure to protect your investment, and get them off at the right time and store them somewhere safe.
When you do get around to having your winter tires taken off, make sure you have your replacement tires rotated. It’s recommended that you switch the front tires with the back ones since front tires typically take the most strain while driving. This will prevent uneven wear.
Though we have some warm weather coming up, we do have some days and nights that will see around or below freezing temperatures. So, pay attention to your local weather reports and act accordingly.
It’s purely individual preference on when to take off your winter tires but follow these basic suggestions to keep yourself safe. A few more weeks of wear on your tires is a small price to pay for safety and peace of mind!